One injured in attack on campus, no arrests made
Published: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Updated: Thursday, November 15, 2012 01:11
One person was taken to the hospital Tuesday night after a fight on campus led to a stabbing near the Human Performance and Recreation Building and Jones Hall at the University of Southern Mississippi.
No arrests had been made as of Wednesday night, but University Police Chief Bob Hopkins said a pool of suspects had been identified.
“We’re still interviewing between the suspects we have,” Hopkins said. “It’s a hodgepodge of people, a combination of non-students and students living on and off campus.”
Hopkins said the fight, which involved about 10 people, was a continuation of an altercation that started Friday night at an off-campus party when a group of people showed up uninvited.
“As a result of that, there was some pushing and shoving at the party,” Hopkins said. “This was ultimately the end result of that altercation.”
Hopkins said that about 45 minutes after the disturbance call, the police department was notified by Forrest General Hospital that a man, who was not a student, came in with a stab wound from an incident he said happened at USM.
“We were able to get up there and he told us where it happened,” Hopkins said.
Hopkins added that though police did not recover the weapon used in the attack, they did collect a pair of sunglasses, a cell phone and clothes.
“We got quite a bit of physical evidence,” Hopkins said. “You could tell there was a pretty good scuffle there in the grass.”
Hopkins said the last aggravated assault on campus was on May 8 when a domestic disturbance led to a stabbing in Reed Green Coliseum at PACE Head Start graduation.
“Aggravated assaults just don’t happen very often here,” Hopkins said. “They usually occur as a result of something else, like a domestic disturbance or alcohol. This is the first time in a while we’ve actually had a student-related issue.”
Hopkins said UPD has a strong presence on campus and part of their job is to prevent problems from arising, not just addressing them after the fact.
“The fact still remains, though, that we’re a community and issues will occur,” Hopkins said. “We hope to keep those to a minimum, but they will still occur.”
Hopkins said Eagle Alert is a key factor in keeping students safe during incidents like the one Tuesday.
“Awareness is part of prevention, and we have a good notification system,” Hopkins said. “We were comfortable in knowing that this situation wasn’t a direct threat to students.”